ORISKANY, N.Y. — Tug Hill Tomorrow Land Trust and the Oneida County Cooperative Extension Office will be holding an informational meeting for farmers about the next round of grants for the NYS Farmland Protection Program. These Purchase of Development Rights grants pay a farmer to place an agricultural conservation easement on their farm in order to protect productive farmland and limit non-agricultural development. The farmer retains ownership of the land, use, and management of the farm; however, the land will have permanent restrictions on commercial, residential and industrial uses in perpetuity.
This is a very competitive program across the state and locally. Tug Hill Tomorrow is limited to a total of six grants for the entire four county Tug Hill region (includes Jefferson, Lewis, Oneida and Oswego counties). The grant pays a farmer up to 87.5 percent of the value of the development rights on the land and 87.5 percent of the project costs.
Due to limited funding and the high level of interest locally, Oneida County farmers must complete a pre-application and meet a set of eligibility criteria to be considered for the State grant. These pre-applications will be ranked by the Agricultural & Farmland Protection Board and the top farms are invited to work with Tug Hill Tomorrow and county agencies on submitting an application to NYS.
If you are interested in learning more about the program and how you can participate, the meeting will be held from 6-8 p.m. at the Oneida County Cooperative Extension Office at 121 Second Street, Oriskany, NY 13424 from 6-8 p.m. on Oct. 2. Please contact Remi Link at 315-736-3394 ext 111 or firstname.lastname@example.org to register. If you cannot make this meeting, or for more information please contact Linda Garrett or Richard Johnston at Tug Hill Tomorrow Land Trust, 315-779-8240 or email@example.com.
— Cornell Cooperative Extension